Had a chat with Michael Voris yesterday

We talked for about an hour.  Got a chance to know each other a bit and I had a chance to lay out most of my concerns.  It ended on a friendly note, though I don’t think I really got through to him.  I promised I wouldn’t talk about anything he said, so I can’t really detail the conversation much.  But a good start, I hope.

By sheer unrelated coincidence, I was contacted by a friend out in Mpls./St. Paul who asked if I’d be willing to debate him next month at a thing they have going out there called the Argument of the Month Club.  It’s basically a bunch of guys who like to get together, have a good time, and argue about Issues of the Day.  Michael Matt of the Remnant (who I spoke to on the phone and very much liked), Dave Deavel, Dale Ahlquist and sundry others have moved in and out of its precincts, so it sounds like an interesting and fun crowd.

Anyway, they are having Michael Voris out on October 8 and wanted somebody to argue with him about something, seeing as how it’s an argument club, so they asked if I would do it.  I said I would and we hammered out the following point to argue: Resolved: The way to true reform of the Church is prayer, fasting, almsgiving, and the corporal and spiritual works of mercy”  I will argue in the affirmative.  I presume his replies will not be “No. It isn’t.”

Best part: this gives me a chance to spend a couple of days sponging off Ahlquist.  When he comes to Seattle, I always take him to Ivar’s for seafood and a walk on the waterfront, so I fully intend to soak him for some really nice meal.  I’m thinking maybe steak.  Just so long as it’s expensive.

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  • Dean

    Come to Iowa for good steak.
    Go to Minnesota for frostbite and filet of mosquito.

  • contrarian

    Fantastic! As a subscriber to the Remnant, a subscriber to Church Militant TV, and a financial supporter and huge fan (junky?) of this great blog, this post makes me jump up and down with glee.

    Hope you love Minnesota. That’s my home state, and I miss it terribly. The Argument of the Month is fantastic. If folks go to YoutTube, you’ll find a few that have been recorded and uploaded–so they can see what it’s all about. I hope that yours is recorded too!

    Cool beans, times infinity.

    And, as a Minnesotan by birth, I must add: ignore the Iowan (I-wegian) in the comment below. What do they know (answer: nothing…ever!)? 🙂

  • Maggie Goff

    I’m hoping that there will be video?

  • Ut omnes unum sint.

  • Dcn Rick Paine

    Here’s a list of the top 10 steak houses in the Twin Cities http://blogs.citypages.com/food/2012/10/top_10_steak_houses_twin_cities.php?page=2. Enjoy!

  • OldWorldSwine

    In all likelihood – God willin’ – I’ll get to meet you! Perhaps I’ll even finally meet the mysterious Richard Aleman, who lives here but whose path I’ve yet to cross.

  • If you get a chance, check out the Basilica of St. Mary in downtown Minneapolis. My husband and I did RCIA & were confirmed there. Gorgeous, gorgeous church!!

    • Dave

      Hmmmm. I will try to make it to this argument. And Mark, DO check out the Basilica if you get a chance. It’s in my top five most beautiful churches. It’s not the most orthodox parish, though, if you actually attend Mass there, so watch out for that. It’s probably like a typical parish in Seattle.

      • They must have changed in the last 10 years… the liturgies we attended there were lovely. The Easter Vigil mass was absolutely breathtaking.

        • Dave

          Hopefully, I am the one who is wrong…my information is not state-of-the-art either.

  • Procopius

    Steak? In Minneapolis?
    Best way to go in Mnpls/St. Paul is Vietnamese

  • Steve

    Mark, you say, “The way to true reform of the Church is prayer, fasting, almsgiving, and the corporal and spiritual works of mercy” I will argue in the affirmative. I presume his replies will not be “No. It isn’t.”

    I think you should be prepared for an answer that doesn’t necessarily deny the truth of your premise, but denies that you’ve given an exhaustive list. That there might be other actions that need to be taken in conjunction with a stronger commitment to those fundamental things.

    Or, they might agree with you entirely. But they may contend that some of those works of mercy, such as “admonishing sinners” and “teaching the ignorant”, is being neglected – or not being done the way they ought to be.

    • chezami

      That’s what I assume since I suggested that to him yesterday. 🙂 My argument will be “You’re doing it wrong.”

  • Evan

    Mark, I told you once…

    • chezami


      • Evan

        You can’t post the Argument Clinic and then expect me not to start an argument with you. 🙂

        • chezami

          D’oh! I get it.

          • Alma Peregrina

            No, you don’t.

            • chezami

              Yes I do.

    • No you didn’t! 😉

      • Evan

        Yes, I did.

    • Look, this isn’t an argument. An argument is a connected series of statements intended to establish a proposition. You’re just contradicting people.

      • Evan

        Look, to argue with you, I have to take up a contrary position.

  • Maolsheachlann

    If only we could somehow splice Voris’s bounding, galloping, white-hot zeal for the Faith with our host’s awareness that Catholic apologetics is not the same thing as a first-person-shoot-’em-up zombie game! (Not that I’m suggesting there’s anything lacking in the Sheavian zeal, just that Voris is bouncing off the walls with it.)

  • Myra D’Souza

    There was a time I subscribed to Michael Voris’ daily rant then I directed him gently to my junk mail.

    • John Wilmington

      What a shame. You’re obviously not a well informed Catholic.

  • Pappy

    Argument of the Month is great, I hope that you’ll be able to be there.
    Good food, plenty of beer and good times.

    As for steak dinner, I’ll grill you steak (angus) if you come over to the house.

    • chezami

      I appreciate the offer, but if we do that it won’t cost Ahlquist anything, which is pretty much the point. Maybe if you come too I can get him to pick your check as well. 🙂

  • Baron Kaza

    I guess you no longer call him a cult leader,,, I hope he crushes you like a bug

    • chezami

      There’s that Reactionary zeal for the Folk Hero that we’ve come to know so well! Absolutely dripping with spite. And all for Jesus, of course.

    • Alma Peregrina

      No, no, no, sorry ol’ chap. Here is contradiction. Abuse is next door.

  • Athelstane

    So will this be an entire course, or just a one-time argument?

    • Evan

      I’m sorry, if you want to go on arguing, you’ll have to pay.

  • Alan

    Interesting that the focus of your argument will include reform through fasting and almsgiving, but the focus of your trip will be eating steak and getting a friend to spend his money on your dinner.

    What did I miss?

    • chezami

      A sense of humor?

      • Fr. Denis Lemieux

        Humor! Humor!! HUMOR!!! You said prayer and fasting, buster – now you’re reforming the Church with humour!!! How dare you!
        (This is an attempt at humour…)

        • Margaret

          Our TWO chief weapons are prayer and fasting. And an almost fanatical devotion to the Po— Our THREE chief weapons are. No… AMONGST our weaponry are…

    • Thomas Boynton Tucker

      A luxury cruise during Lent?

  • Thomas Boynton Tucker

    Aye, verily, that is truly one of the funniest sketches in the history of TV comedy!

  • Elmwood

    Prayer, fasting and almsgiving… I don’t see how it’s possible to argue against them. Those are the foundations of Christianity. Without which, you are not truly Christian.

  • Ivar’s 🙂

  • This almost sounds like the plot of a southern drama where two grande dames act all nice for the sake of propriety. Then again, I may have been living in Texas for too long.

  • Jennifer

    Tell Dale that you want to go to Manny’s Steakhouse in Minneapolis. It is both delicious and expensive!

  • Ann Margaret Lewis

    Wait…wait…I’m confused. You’re going to discuss fasting over a steak dinner?

    • Barfly_Kokhba

      One will come neither eating nor drinking, and one will come eating and drinking. Then they’ll go both back to their respective blogs, and the latter will inform his readers that the former is possessed by a demon. Then the former will claim to his readers that the latter is a glutton and a drunkard who is friends with sinners and tax collectors.

  • Tom Leith

    Hmmmm. It is un-Distributist to patronize a steak house on a top-ten list.

    • chezami

      I told Dale he could either take me to an expernsive restaurant or else (bum bum BUMMMMMMMM) McDonalds. 🙂

      • Tom Leith

        Then I guess you’re having something expensive. Dale wouldn’t set foot in a McD’s.

  • Eve Fisher

    “The way to true reform of the Church is prayer, fasting, almsgiving, and the corporal and spiritual works of mercy.” I thought that was the true way to reform anything.

  • Thomas J. Ryan

    I’ve been to a few and would even be wiling to put you up in the Hilton so you can make it. I don’t think I have enough freq flier points on the right airline to fly you out though but I could check.
    Fr. Echert is fantastic. The audience is male only and drawn all types who get along great. And, except for Lent, the food is always fantastic. Beer is free.

  • Chesire11

    If you really want to soak him, make him take you out for seafood…it’s generally much more expensive in teh middle of the country than it is out here on the edges.


  • Jill

    MURRAY’S for the best steak, and the owners are Catholic

  • John Wilmington

    Your point is well taken; nevertheless, one cannot ignore the fact that reform must also address the source of abuses taking place in various aspects of the Church. For example, the diluted catechetics being taught in many Catholic schools have there origin in a false interpretation of Vatican II documents. Yes, one must pray and fast, but one must also adhere to our obligation as baptized Catholic to defend the authentic teaching of the Church.

  • Guest

    Dear Mark, I read one of your other posts after your talk with Voris at the AOTM club. I believe you ended the post saying that traditionalists are poison for the church, and that it has got to stop. May I respectfully ask, what concrete actions do you think should be done to make it stop? Which of these choices would you prefer: 1.prayer, fasting, almsgiving, and personal admonition; 2. keeping a list of offenders’ names, and asking church authorities to excommunicate them; 3. keep a list of offenders’ names, and turn it in to their government for civil penalties related to bigotry and insurrection; or 4.all of the above. Please tell me which decision you think is best. Thank you.

    • chezami

      No. I did not say that traditionalists are poison in the Church. Nor do I say anybody should be kicked out of the Church. I leave such matters to the bishop. Why writes such evil and false nonsense?